Friday, March 1, 2013

American Airlines and United Airlines Merger

Every couple of years, it’s good to take a look at how much we have grown. It gives us a chance to reevaluate how we are doing and what we can change. For American Airlines, it seems that 2013 is that time. They took time to reflect on recent years’ debts, bankruptcy and lay-offs.

American Airlines is coming back with a vengeance to take what they once dominated. So what strategies will they put in place?

-New Look- logo and aircrafts
-New management team
-New merger with United Airlines creating the largest airline in the world
-New Advertising strategies

What does this mean for us jet setters?

American Airlines is trying to modernize our travel experience by offering better customer service, redesigned airport terminals, offering new hubs, Wi-Fi, new apps and smoother check-in.

AMR (American Airline’s parent company) already reported $44 million profit in January. Check out this video with insights on the new aircraft interior.

What are your thoughts on this merger?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Sunday, January 27, 2013

New York Travel Show

This past weekend, tourism boards, travelers, travel agents gathered at the Jacob Javitz Center. It was the 10th Annual New York Times Travel Show. There were booths representing every corner of the world, big and small. The signs were big and the representatives were welcoming. It wasn't a competition for the best booth but presentation did not go unnoticed. It was as if you hopped from one country another as you maneuvered through the crowd from booth to booth. It was a blend of voices in different languages. I skipped around only to gather information from countries I'd never been to, establishing conversation and make new friends.

As I looked around, the Taiwan table caught my attention with its bright colors, pamphlets, flags, big crowd,  and display of calligraphy. Yes! There was an older man patiently writing what people requested atTaiwanese table. I ventured onto the line to request that he write the name of my blog. As I explained the best I could in a series of hand gestures and descriptive adjectives, he looked puzzled at me. He had taken the word "wanderlust" out of context. The guy behind me starts to chime in saying that he has seen the movie. No, I said its "an irrisistable desire to travel". "Ahh travel, yes like planes" he replies. Apparently, his english was fairly limited. He smiled and started drawing a series of curved lines intersecting straight ones all over the paper to make into what ended up being his interpretation of what he thought I was saying. He asked me to write down my blog name as he was intrigued by its title and wanted to read up on it. "Very original" he said over and over. I honestly just hope it really says "Mbracing Wanderlust".

If he was any indication as to how friendly and inviting people from Taiwan are, I would definately love to visit sometime. And at the end of it all, isn't that the purpose of this Travel Show?- To open your mind to countries you would not have thought of going to?

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Bourdain Travel Rants

Anthony Bourdain
He is just so frank, a genius of his craft and truly an admirable man. I think anyone who knows me well is clear on my fascination with Anthony Bourdain. I wouldn't miss his shows "No Reservation" and "The Layover", as he travels from city to city pin pointing the best points of interest, the culture and the most amazing culinary experiences.

Ha! Safe to say, I idolize this man and would love to work with him. In reality, it seems his job is just to go all over the world and try new food.
(Food + Travel = My Ideal World)
I follow him on Twitter and on occasions, I pretend we are friends and I tweet him.

Well, in his most recent set of tweets, he speaks about being en route to the Cayman Islands for another culinary experience. His flight from MIA to the Cayman Islands was delayed through American Airlines. We have all been there, at an airline's mercy for timely transportation because let's be honest here, what's the point of being able to pick your flight times, if they will be delayed 9 times out of 10.

In his outrage, Anthony mentions that he has been waiting for 2 hours. While he waited, as the greatly frank man he is, he updated us real time as it was all happening. His tweets started with:

@Bourdain: Love the poor gate agent, standing mute under the “on time ” sign when clearly we are f**ked. #AA

@Bourdain: What does “special situation” mean in airlines speak? Ain’t nothin’ special about late departure #AA

@Bourdain: Latest news is it took #AA two hours to admit a passenger dropped a wet deuce on a seat. Need to change planes

Unbelievable, how in our day and age a flight can be delayed for 2 hours for something so primitive. Someone had defecated on the plane. They left the flight attendants a less than pleasant surprise. As analytical as I am, I got to thinking. How severe could this "number 2" have been, that it caused an airline to delay for exactly that, 2 hours. Comical but real, there is never a dull moment in travel. One of Bourdain's last tweets on the subject, was him jokingly thinking of paying it forward with the airport panini he had eaten earlier.

American Airlines opted for a very diplomatic answer to this rant by stating that "the flight in question was delayed approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes. We apologize to our customers for the inconvenience."

Friday, January 11, 2013


The clock struck twelve and its January 1st. So I hear you bought a gym membership, you are going cold turkey on the smoking habit, oh and you're promising yourself to spend more time with your family. Maybe you were thinking of paying off all your credit cards and learning a new language.
Ah, nothing better than the sweet sound of resolutions at the beginning of the year. Good ol' clean slate.

Who came up with the concept of making yearly goals that fizzle out by mid-February? There goes the discipline we thought we had. The little voice echoes in your head -"this year will be different, i'm sticking to my resolution". Let be honest here, if you've had the same resolution two years in a row, there's a huge probability of it falling on the list of fails.

I, for one, think my goal is pretty achievable. I am not the type to create resolutions but this year I decided to join in on the millions of people who year after year obliged in self inflicted commitments. I am committing to a total of five vacations this year or two big trips. I know this sounds a bit ambitious but definitely possible. So as I embark on this whole resolution thing, I hear you rooting!- Let the travel deal research begin!

What are some of your resolutions for this year? How do you keep the momentum going past the first three months of the year?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Legends- Something to Hold On To

A legend is often based on an event that happened in the past. The way the story unfolds usually involves some sort of hero, in some amazing place but the stories have a deeper significance which is why they are passed on from generation to generation. The only catch to how the legend is kept alive, is that somewhere during the passing of the story from one person to the next, people add their very own twist. This makes it hard to keep the true essence of the story. Hawaiians have many legends to keep their culture alive.

Aside from its gold sand beaches stretching as far as the eye can see, are the vast blue ocean that gives way to the islands of Lanai and Molokai off in the distance. This place has so much history. One of Ka'anapali Beaches's most famous attraction is the daily cliff diving ceremony off of the beach's northernmost cliffs, known as "Black Rock" (Puu Kekaa). So every evening at sunset, the Sheraton Hotel show cases a tradition for their guests and locals alike of a ritual that has been in place for generations. The ceremony takes 7-10 minutes total. As the shy sun drops low inviting for a gradient sunset, the Hawaiian warrior runs on the beach and on to the cliff with a torch at hand. His bravery is unparalleled. He climbs up this huge cliff that clearly states how dangerous it is, let alone the fact that he holds a torch but his muscular physique somehow makes me feel at ease. He lights up the torches up top of the black rock and proceeds to offer up the lei to the heavens above. As he stops at the very tip of the cliff, he addresses the ancient Hawaiian gods (in native Hawaiian language, Pidgin) and cliff dives head first into the dark ocean below him. According to the legend, a man named Moemoe insulted the demigod of Maui, who turned Moemoe into the rock. Since then, the black rock is said to be a place from which spirits depart to go to their ancestral homelands. How is that for a legend?!- Do you have any legends in your culture?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Stop Waiting

Do not let routine disrupt this amazing life you have!- GO NOW!!